ALEXANDER GOEHR (b.1932): Since Brass, Nor Stone... for Percussion and String Quartet, ...around Stravinsky for Violin and Wind Quartet, Clarinet Quintet, manere for Clarinet and Violin, Largo Siciliano for Horn, Violin and Piano.

Catalogue Number: 11P070

Label: NMC

Reference: D187

Format: CD

Price: $18.98

Description: These works were all written in the past decade, as Goehr approached his 80th year, and represent the flowering of the most recent, highly productive phase of his career in which he has produced chamber works of great concentration, meticulously constructed yet free of dogmatic adherence to a particular compositional school, and often with the composer's strong sense of the relevance of history to contemporary music expressed through reference to models from the past. Thus ...around Stravinsky consists of a prelude and postlude to accompany Stravinsky's very early Pastorale, in which Goehr suggests a connection between this early piece and Stravinsky's later stylistic developments; the Clarinet Quintet borrows a structural device from a Josquin motet, manere consists of variations on a plainchant motif, and so on. Since Brass..., its title borrowed from Shakespeare, achieves the unlikely seamless integration of a substantial percussion battery with string quartet in a work of great rhythmic vitality in which the strings seem to supply the harmony demanded by the expressive and detailed percussion writing. Largo Siciliano exemplifies the composer's gift for finding a musical solution to a formal problem, integrating a serial fragment of Messiaen, twelve-tone processes and the archaic and stately siciliano. Colin Currie (percussion), Pavel Haas Quartet, The Nash Ensemble.

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